The Wokingham Paper

Wargrave community organise volunteers to help each street across village

VILLAGERS across Wargrave have been putting their community first, with a coordinated approach to help those self isolating.

On Monday, March 16 concerned residents created a social media group to help organise help for the most vulnerable members of the community.

Now, the group has coordinated a mass effort to support residents on 48 streets across the village.

Paul Owen, one of the group admins explained how the village residents have pulled together.

He said: “The strength of this really is in everyone doing their thing. It started as a Whatsapp group of volunteers but we quickly realised that wouldn’t be suitable with hundreds of people.

“Ultimately, we are trying to ensure there is a group of people on each street. Now we have a team of volunteers for each road and a street coordinator. It’s about helping the community in a village-wide effort.”

As part of their coordinated response, village volunteers have been helping older people with their weekly shopping, collect prescriptions and have organised regular telephone calls to people self-isolating alone.

Mr Owen, who has lived in the village for 16 years felt that the crisis has also helped bring people together.

“Walking down the street as part of our daily exercise, there’s a huge sense of community spirit. People smile and say hello to others, even from a distance.

“We’re a village that looks out for each other but it’s brought people even closer.

“It makes me proud, not just of Wargave but of the whole country. So many groups like ours have set up across the UK. There’s something in British culture about having to do something.”

Mr Owen explained that volunteers are prepared to continue supporting their community for as long as necessary.

“Of course, we’re all hoping to start moving about and doing stuff, but not if it might cause harm to others,” he said. “There will be an end to this, but until then, let’s do what we can.”

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